How does an assessor determine your Cook County tax bill?


Quick Answer

The tax assessor for Cook County, Illinois calculates property taxes based on the estimated value of the property. The assessor determines the estimated value based on sales of similar properties in the neighborhood. As of 2015, the assessed valuation is 10 percent of the estimated value, according to Joseph Berrios, the Cook County Assessor. The assessor multiplies the assessed valuation by an equalization factor and subtracts a homeowner exemption before multiplying by the local tax rate to calculate the bill.

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Full Answer

Property owners who disagree with the valuation of their properties have the right to appeal, according to the Cook County Assessor's Office. Common reasons for appeals include appraisals that are not uniform with others in the neighborhood, inaccurate descriptions of the property in the appraiser's records, or overvaluation.

The county determines if properties are commercial or residential based on their use, reports Berrios. There are different rules for calculating the taxes for commercial properties than there are for residential ones. Commercial property owners with buildings that are vacant may apply for relief by filing an affidavit for the vacancy period.

Reassessments, or changes in tax rates or state equalization factors, can increase the taxes on the property, according to the Cook County Assessor. If the property owner pays his taxes as a part of his mortgage escrow payment, the changes can increase the monthly payment.

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